Career choices are not always driven by money and status

I would rather pick a career that speaks to me and I am passionate about than do a job for the heck of it. I am not ambitious, but I am career-minded.

Interviewed by Poorva Dinesh

Aparna Ravichandran, Manager with a NGO, 31 years, Bangalore

Why did you decide to speak on career?
I have quite a few thoughts on career and what determines people’s choice of career. And my life serves as an interesting example. So it’s a topic I can speak on.

Why does your life serve as an interesting example?
To go back a bit, I was working as a German language translator in a German MNC, and I was getting opportunities to travel and see the world, which is one of my passions. I was earning a double salary, so the bank-balance wasn’t a problem. I was young, without a care in the world, but I wasn’t doing what I love doing. And this prompted me to keep thinking of what I would rather be doing, and once I figured out I wanted to be in sports and found out how to get in, it was an easy decision to drop what I was doing. I was extremely frustrated doing my job anyway.

You were taking home a good pay package, and you decided to quit and get back to studying. Was it an easy decision to make?
Once I had decided what I wanted to do and the career path I wanted to pursue then the decision was easy. In hindsight, there have been the low moments when you find that you are not earning as much as you could have made.

Do you regret your decision?
I see people who continued working in the same company, and are comfortable in their lives, booking cars and houses, and I don’t even have the money to plan my next travel trip. At that point, it does become difficult, but the only question I have to ask myself is would I rather be them or me right now, and that’s when it all becomes super easy, because at any point in time, I would rather be me.

What do you do for a living?
I am the Head of Partnerships with a Sports NGO.

Are you career-minded or job-oriented?
Career-minded more than job-oriented, I think. In the sense, I would rather pick a career that speaks to me and I am passionate about than do a job for the heck of it. I am not ambitious, but I am career-minded.

(ALSO READ: A Holistic Way To Look At Your Childhood)

What does love mean to you?
Love is something I have never managed to figure out. I see people around me who say they have found love, and it’s great, and they make it work. Of course, both sides have to compromise, but the main thing is they want to stay together so that for me is love. The one form of love I do know in my life is that for family and friends for whom I will make a compromise and make sacrifices without thinking too much.

*For our readers – This interview was taken two years ago, and since then Aparna has made quite a progress in her career. She is now the Head of Partnerships and travels around the globe. 


Categories: Career

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